August 16, 2013 at 1:00 am

Allen Trieu

Spartans will be tough to beat for Oak Park athlete John Kelly

Jayru Campbell is helping to sell Michigan State to John Kelly, pictured. (Photo courtesy of Allen Trieu)

Michigan State continues to emphasize in-state recruiting in the 2015 class, offering Oak Park’s John Kelly last week. The 5-10, 175-pound Kelly played running back and safety for the Knights last season. He says MSU has not determined a position for him yet.

“I talked to Coach Dantonio and he said they want me to come up as an athlete and we will figure out which position I will play when I get up there," Kelly said.

A participant on the Maximum Exposure and Sound Mind Sound Body programs, Kelly has good relationships with new Director of Player Advancement and Camp Director Curtis Blackwell, and also Detroit Cass Tech quarterback Jayru Campbell, Michigan State’s first verbal commitment in the class of 2015.

"I really like the school and the whole coaching staff," Kelly said, "and with Coach Blackwell being up there, it’s just another part in it. If I did go there, I know I'd have someone to look after me."

Kelly’s first offer came from Western Michigan this summer and he is hearing from other programs like Michigan, Ohio State, Minnesota, Illinois and more. He said he plans to visit both Michigan and Michigan State this fall. The Spartans invited him to their home opener against Western Michigan, but Kelly has a game against Orchard Lake St. Mary’s that day and is not sure if he will be able to make the trip.

Regardless, the Spartans will be tough to beat for Kelly, especially with their future signal-caller continuing to sing their praises to him.

"(Jayru) thinks this recruiting class is going to be a lot of fun and he wants me to get up there, and he thinks other 2015 guys are going to end up there too," said Kelly, who will be in East Lansing with his parents on Sunday for another practice."

Cole returns to East Lansing

Saginaw Heritage’s Brian Cole, currently ranked as Fox Sports NEXT’s top rising junior in the state of Michigan, was a visitor for practice in East Lansing last week. The 6-2, 190-pound safety and wide receiver has an offer from the Spartans and is one of their top targets.

"Practice went well and I got to meet up with a couple Detroit boys that I know that were on the Max Ex team with me when we played in the 7-on-7 in Cleveland,” he said. “I talked to some of the coaches, had a tour, met coach Tom Izzo, and had lunch with the team."

Also with offers from Ohio State, Michigan and Tennessee, different schools have talked to Cole about different positions. He worked out as a defensive back at Michigan State’s summer camp in June, and as of now, that is the side of the ball he is looking at.

"Right now, I see myself as a defensive player, but after the season might see myself somewhere else,” he said. “It doesn't really matter."

As for any leaders, Cole says he is “neutral” at this time. He plans to visit Tennessee on Oct. 19.

Spartans still looking at Moorman

Northville High has a 6-5, 275-pound mauler on the offensive line in David Moorman, who currently holds Eastern Michigan and Central Michigan offers, and interest from other programs, including Michigan State. He camped this summer and visited East Lansing for last week’s practice and Spartan Day.

“It was a great day,” Moorman told Spartan Digest’s Mike Wilson. “I saw everything. I talked to all the coaches. I had met Curtis Blackwell a couple times before in summer stuff, but this was the first time I got a chance to talk to him. I talked to Coach Dantonio. Everything was good.”

As for a potential Spartan offer, Moorman just needs to take care of business this fall.

“They said they wanted to see me, how I play and how I handle a bad play, like how I come back from that,” he said. “They at least want to see me once before they decide to offer me.”

More information

John Kelly profile

Brian Cole profile

David Moorman profile

Allen Trieu began covering the state of Michigan for in 2005 and began managing the entire Midwest in 2009. He has been featured on the Big Ten Network on its annual Signing Day Show. His Michigan State recruiting column appears every Friday at For more on MSU recruiting, visit